A volcano rumbles in East Africa: a critical examination of the vulnerability of South Sudan to widespread genocide

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Mandela, Walter
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S.Sudan is the world‟s youngest state having seceded from Sudan in 2011. The state, comprised of over 60 nations (ethnicities) is presently dominated by 2 ethnic groups (Dinka and Nuer). Nonetheless, the Dinka reign supreme having established a “Dinkocracy”.Distressingly, the Dinka and Nuer are profoundly polarised. The state has a bloody inter-ethnic conflict history especially between the Dinka and the Nuer in addition to tribalism, marginalisation and exclusion. The economy is in shambles. The government has failed to assert its authority throughout the country. Sudan sabotages S.Sudanese progress. A bulk of the population is traumatised from war and human rights violations as countless ”extremist” ethnic militias armed to the teeth roam the country. These factors provide the ideal climate for the precipitation of genocide. An alleged coup d‟état in December 2013 exposed the state‟s vulnerability to genocide. It triggered a genocidal state-wide conflict. Uganda‟s military intervened early and arguably prevented widescale genocide. This paper applies data representative of the dynamics and realities in S.Sudan to the Stages of genocide formulated by scholars to portray the country‟s susceptibility to genocide. The paper argues for meaningful interventions from Bystanders especially the “international community” since its best positioned to spearhead S.Sudan‟s insulation from genocide and bears a responsibility to do so.
Second semester University: Maastricht University.
coup d'etat, South Sudan, genocide, international relations